juvenile coopers hawk in the grass The Saga
Rufous Hawk

Chapter 7

A Day in the Life of a Cooper's Hawk

More about Roxie

Here is another video of Roxie having a meal. The interesting parts (to me) are at the end of the video. While we humans take care to wash our face and hands, brush our teeth, and comb our hair, we are likely no more fastidious than a Cooper's hawk. Watch as Roxie performs the following ablutions: (1) She cleans her talons by plucking away leftover tidbits of food. (2) She feaks her beak; this is the side-to-side swiping of her beak on the tree; feaking cleans her beak and the feathers of her face surrounding it; feaking may also serve to sharpen the beak. (3) She rouses (shakes vigorously) to realign her feathers and perhaps get rid of crumbs. Later on, she will preen, taking oil from the preen gland at the base of her tail and applying it while she realigns the feathers all over her body.

March 31, 2015 Lest you think Roxie is the only one who is eating, rest assured that is not the case. We have seen Rufous having meals in the cypress tree also. And just so you will know exactly how well these hawks are eating, take a look at the size of Rufous' crop in the following photos!

Rufous with Full Crop Rufous with Full Crop Rufous with Full Crop

Rufous at Work Rufous has begun to take over more of the nest-building duties. In fact, he is not neglecting any of his duties. We have seen Rufous and Roxie mating numerous times, always in the cypress tree. I wouldn't be surprised to learn they have other locations for their amorous exploits also!

Most of the stick-gathering is taking place from within the tree, selected from live switches. I have not seen either of the hawks go to the ground for sticks in recent days.

Soon we will no longer be able to watch the hawks' every movement in the cypress trees. You can see new green foliage growing out all over the tree!

Continue to Chapter 8: Rainy Days